Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Fixing Fractured Families... thoughts

The amazing US is struggling.  Through all of the presidential debates let's talk about what is being avoided.
1. Immigration levels are at all time highs.  This is not Hispanic.  This is other cultures.  Middle East, Asian, African, and some Hispanic.
2. Cultural morass ensues.  How do you immigrate and integrate into anarchy?  There is a loss of moral center.  Our churches are failing and flailing.  Our solutions don't work.
3. Families are fractured.  41% of kids are born into unmarried situations.  40% of kids have no father in the home.   Lifelong dads.  Kids need 'em.  It takes two to tango.  It takes a good balance of father and mother.  Not to be too simplistic, but no body is born without the contribution of male and female.  It is a natural, creative design.  Humans are not asexual.  Abandonment of children by fathers is a tragedy.
4. Violence is high, especially among people in their 20s and 30s.
5. Drugs, alcohol, legal and illegal addictions are rampant.
6. Jobs will not fix this.  Political rhetoric will not fix this.  Good deals will not fix this.  Fixing fractured families will fix this.  The government does horrible in fixing fractured families. That is the job of kingdom minded people.

Think!  Study! Pray!  Act!

Monday, December 31, 2012

Friend, Be blessed. Greeting A New Year and A New Day Through the Eyes of a Father's Heart

  Through the Eyes of a Father’s Heart

“Bring to me what You have spoken of me.”

Genesis 18:19 19 For I have known him, in order that he may command his children and his household after him, that they keep the way of the LORD, to do righteousness and justice, that the LORD may bring to Abraham what He has spoken to him.”

“Bring to me, God, what you have spoken of me.”  That is my prayer.  I want what Abraham had.  Every day for a week, I have prayed it all day long.  In the night, I wake praying that prayer.  In just a few days, we launch a major initiative for Fathers and Leaders.  It will take enormous time, talent, and finances.  Anything worth doing will meet resistance on all fronts.

This New Year, as I consider next steps, my heart turns toward my physical and spiritual and relational children.  All are important.  As a Dad, the children of my wife, Dian, and I are precious.  They count a lot in my thinking and praying.  As a pastor of some 30 years in the same metro and now assisting in Mexico and across the United States, spiritual children who look to me for guidance and leadership are priceless.   As a businessman and manager and community participant, those that look to me for direction are powerfully on my mind.  As a personal mentor of men, those that look to me are present in my thoughts.   In all of these ways people have been impacted and had direction pushed into their lives through example.

“Bring to me, God, what you have spoken of me.”

Abraham was a commander of lives.  Command pushes.  Command influences.  Command is generally not gentle.  In Genesis 18:19, God tells us that Abraham received so that he could ‘command’ into the lives of his children and his grandchildren and his community.  He was to command righteousness and justice.  He was to command the way of the Lord.  God gave to Abraham what He had spoken of him because He could trust him to live the message into the lives of others.  Abraham was a generational influencer.  God gave him much because of that.
Prayer:
So, Friend, I want to pray for you today as your life commands into the lives of those around you.  What has been accumulated in your life and what is promised is meant to strengthen those around you.
 
Father, here is my friend, Friend.  Take what has been built that is good in them and bless others.  Take what has been built that is not so good and let it slide to the side.  Grace over mistakes and build upon goodness.
Father, I speak love and life over Friend. 
This is a New Day. Every day is a new day.  Your mercies are new every morning.
Let the promises of the heart find fulfillment in the days ahead. 
Cause vision to look up to a world of promise and a world of plenty.
Cause insight to see the good impact of life and yearn for more.
Stir  the heart of The Father to grow and prosper those entrusted to their care.
And may the coming days be merry and bright and full of hope and constancy of dream and vision and purposeful generational influence to good.


More thoughts on this can be found at the full blog: Through the Eyes of a Father’s Heart « The Community Transformation Initiative http://ow.ly/grN9n
 
Phil Larson 405-388-8037
www.prayermetro.net  (blog,FB,Twitter,Slideshare)
to support financially
Community Transformation c/o PrayerMetro, Inc. 501c3
508 Tumbleweed Dr. Yukon, Ok 73099

Share every good thing you have with anyone who teaches you what God has said (CEV) Galatians 6:6
I am not trying to get something from you, but I want you to receive the blessings that come from giving. Philippians 4:17
 

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Sunday, December 16, 2012

See a Great Light! Merry Christmas, Friend.

Isaiah 9: In Galilee of the Gentiles. The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who dwelt in the land of the shadow of death, upon them a light has shined.

 

During the weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas, my family has always enjoyed watching Christmas themed movies and celebrating time with friends.  For us, an opportunity to have a world focused on giving and receiving and thanking the God of Comfort is special.  More so, the stirring story of God become man to bring us back into unity with Him and each other lifts my soul.   Whether you believe it or not, you have to admit, Friend, it is a great message of hope.

 

I am thankful for each of my friends and family. The honor to exchange prayer with you, Friend, is a blessing.

Yet, there is darkness.  The events in Connecticut are horrendous and full of grief.  So are other events throughout our world.  Every moment abuse is in motion and the hearts and minds and bodies of individuals are tormented.  The light of Christ gives us relief.  Dwelling on the pain too often darkens our souls.
 
So let me pray:
 
Father, let some light into our darkened world.
Bring relief to those families and friends whose sensibility has been assaulted.
Guide them through grief and anger and pain and connect them with the Light of Christ.
Through love of family and friend bring healing to their minds and emotions.
Erase thoughts of feelings of guilt with a redemptive embrace of Christ's love.
Erase pains of remorse and loss with a confidence in acceptance in the Family of God.
Stay beside them Father in days ahead.  Comfort them. 
 
Father, bless my friend, Friend.
In this Christmas season of Life shine joyfully over Friend.
Capture happiness deep in the soul of Friend and bring it to life.
Don't let the darkness rule.  Shine!
Give a hope and a lift in the truth that surely You love us so much that You were born one of us, lived as one of us, died as one of us, resurrected as one of us, and offer to live in us.
 
Bring Christmas alive in Friend. 

 
Phil Larson 405-388-8037
www.prayermetro.net  (blog,FB,Twitter,Slideshare)
to support financially
Community Transformation c/o PrayerMetro, Inc. 501c3
508 Tumbleweed Dr. Yukon, Ok 73099

Share every good thing you have with anyone who teaches you what God has said (CEV) Galatians 6:6
I am not trying to get something from you, but I want you to receive the blessings that come from giving. Philippians 4:17

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Monday, December 3, 2012

Finding Time To Get It All Done

1 Peter 5:6 Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, 7 casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you
 
  Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, Hanukkah, and other holidays crowd into the last few weeks of the year.  Though each of us celebrate in different ways and times and for different reasons, all are affected.  The rush affects the way we conduct ourselves over the phone, the internet, in person, and alone.  The excitement can be thrilling and exhausting.  If that is not enough, there is all the normal activities to which we must attend.
 
Yesterday was busy. 
 
First to Starbucks for prayer and preparation to preach at Luz Y Vida.  It is always an honor to encourage the saints.  A man came up to me and opened his heart over coffee.  Twenty years he was a minister.  Then he spent eight years living in hell as an atheist.  Now, he has been back with God for ten years, yet, never restored to his call.  Why did a stranger come to me in a coffee shop and open with such a story?  He is no longer a stranger, but a soul for whom I pray and desire deeper relationship.
 
As you travel the seasons, take time to encourage one that may not have as great a blessing as you have.
 
Then to Luz Y Vida (Light and Life) on NW Expressway.  The people are beautiful.  Friends came with us and blessed the people.  The congregation took an offering large enough to pay a chunk of expenses for the team to Mexico for Christmas.  I won't go this year, though my heart will go.  The Holy Spirit touched hearts deeply and encouraged men and women to continue in the life of Christ.
 
As you travel the seasons, take time to give out of your abundance to bless another.
 
In the evening, another 400+ legislators were added to the prayer and encouragement list. They have a tough job ahead.  We now reach 4,427 in 32 states.  That is a lot to pray over and answer requests and encourage.
 
As you travel the seasons, think of someone just a step away from you that could use a word of encouragement.
 
All of that is just a normal day.  One day can have a week of impact crunched into a few hours.  Then this weekend there were Christmas lights to hang and grandchild to play with and, and, and....  Life is good.  God is good.
 
It is Monday, and like me you are looking ahead to many activities and engagements.  The office parties are starting.  Last minute budget spending pushes business and government and education to make final decisions.  Tax preparations push.  Business is still busyness.
 
The admonition of Peter is simple.  Submit to God's requests of your life.  Let Him do the work through you.  Live the life at work, home, community, and neighborhood that has been allotted you.  Then don't worry.  Don't fret.  Let Him develop value in it.  Let Him bless it.
 
Prayer:
Father, You are here for Friend.  You walk among us and talk among us with light and life and joy and peace and patience and kindness and longsuffering.  In our rush, touch us.  In our doings, encourage us.  Cause the work of our hands to be blessed and sufficient.  Give us joy to give to others.  Let us see Your life in others and be sensitive to breathe a breath of life into pains and problems which we encounter.  Thanks for Your Son, Jesus.  The salvation and life and reason for the season. 
 
In all of this, Friend, I pray for you.  If you have a specific request, let me know.  PrayerMetro is here for you.  The Center for Father/Leader is here for you.  The home bible study on Tuesday in south OKC is here for you.  The quick bible study and prayer downtown OKC on Wednesday is here for you.  This "super quick" bible study and prayer is here for you.  Take advantage. 


 
Phil Larson 405-388-8037
www.prayermetro.net  (blog,FB,Twitter,Slideshare, website,LI)
to support financially
Community Transformation c/o PrayerMetro, Inc. 501c3
508 Tumbleweed Dr. Yukon, Ok 73099

Share every good thing you have with anyone who teaches you what God has said (CEV) Galatians 6:6
I am not trying to get something from you, but I want you to receive the blessings that come from giving. Philippians 4:17
 

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Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Our nation struggles, Friend. You can make it better.

Phil Larson has worked diligently for the past 15 years to strengthen fathers and families.  His efforts have provided hope for many households.  With your help he can accomplish much more and I look forward to seeing the results across Oklahoma, the Mid-West and the U.S." Ken R Canfield PhD, Founder, National Center for Fathering, Director, Urban Center for the Family. World Impact, Los Angeles, CA.

Your support of fathers, leaders, and pastors makes enormous difference.  Together, Friend, we can educate and encourage thousands of fathers and strengthen their families by reaching where it is hard to reach.

The moral strength of our nation has atrophied in the last five decades.  Fathers need strengthening.  The leadership mindset in business, government, congregation and community develops from fathers.  The leaders developed in a world of fatherlessness need strengthening.  From 1960 forward, we have seen a disastrous rise in fatherlessness and related social ills such as divorce, suicide, abortion, sexually transmitted diseases, drug usage, and moral apathy.   Unmarried birth has skyrocketed to 40% of all births and primarily to women in their twenties and thirties. 

Fathers and Families

What love can engulf our families through the message of Godly fathering?  "I am aware that you, Phil, are a man of great persistence and determination to spread the Word of God to encourage others. ….. express my appreciation and say that I understand how important "Fathering" and good loving fathers are. My hope is that you will be successful in this effort” .an Oklahoma City dad.

Community and Congregation Leaders

What blessing can engage our congregations through powerful prayer and counsel for pastors and ministers? “You must continue to reach pastors, Phil.  You have been anointed for it.  It has meant much to me.” Pastor of a large Black Baptist congregation

Government and Legislative Leaders

What would be the impact on our nation if every legislator in our nation received hope and peace and grace as the present 3242 we reach?  “I want to take a moment to “THANK YOU” for your prayers and for every email I have received from you during this session. Sir, this is my 6th session since my initial election and, by far, this has been my most enjoyable and successful session. …I give God the ultimate credit for everything that occurs every day, but know that you deserve a tremendous amount of credit for keeping me on the right path with every expression of support and encouragement.  Thank you again and my God bless you.”

We intend to find out.

In past years, all of these areas have been a part of our efforts and energy.  Yet, there has never been enough time while working 60+ hours a week in the business community.  Now it is time to turn the tables and give the lion’s share of time to the community and flexible hours to business.  That can only happen with your help and hundreds of others like you.

Fathers and leaders count with me.

Our nation struggles with family bonding and long term fathering engagement.  The results are horrid.

Research is clear, Friend.  When the father stays actively engaged with his children, there are specific results.

1. They perform better in school.

2. They are less likely to live poor.

3. They are less likely to be engaged in criminal activity

4. They are less likely to engage in destructive behaviors such as drug use and early sexual activity.

5. They become more compassionate adults.

In Oklahoma, we started a good thrust in support of fathers in 2001 and have continued over the years.  More Father/Daughter Summits have been held here than in any other city in the nation.  Men have been trained and enabled.  Counselors and social workers and ministers have been trained in new techniques. Citywide campaigns and single congregation campaigns have educated and enabled thousands of men and women. Children have been blessed.  Community cooperation with CBMC, the Oklahoma Family Policy Council, American Fidelity, US Security, the Department of Human Services, CDC, Character First, business leaders, and hundreds of congregations of multi-cultural and multi-denominational background has benefited us all through more family stability and generational blessing.  This has extended in support of leaders in congregations and community.

Now, I have a dream.

It is time to develop our community with targeted and morally responsible resources and support for fathers and leaders.  Right now, I am working with Carey Casey and the National Center for Fathering to bring an affiliate of the NCF to Oklahoma on a full time basis.  In January, I will meet with a brainstorm team in Kansas City at the National Center to make further plans for Oklahoma City. 

We need your input and we need your support.

Dream with me.

·         An interactive resource place for men to come and receive advice and education.  Online and onsite.

·         Continual community visibility through education in business, congregation, and governmental interaction.

·         Constant equipping of community leaders such as pastors, men's group leaders, social workers, counselors, and others to equip and empower men as effective fathers and leaders.

·         A strong and visible voice for families and fathers and two parent homes.

This dream is real.  It is in motion.  We need your support.

What dream do you have to support fathers and families? 

Talk to me now.  Don’t delay your action and your feedback.  Do something positive about the next generation.   Do something distinctive for this generation.  NOW!

phil@shepherdok.com

405-388-8037



Phil Larson 405-388-8037
www.prayermetro.net (FB, Twitter, LI, Slideshare, blog, etc... is all here)
to support financially the undergirding 501c3 since 2002 for charitable contribution is:
PrayerMetro, Inc. 501c3 508 Tumbleweed Dr. Yukon, Ok 73099

Share every good thing you have with anyone who teaches you what God has said (CEV) Galatians 6:6
I am not trying to get something from you, but I want you to receive the blessings that come from giving. Philippians 4:17
 
 
 
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Saturday, November 17, 2012

Have a Great ThanksLiving, Friend. You are dear to God's heart this morning. I am thankful for you.

Leviticus 22:29 And when you offer a sacrifice of thanksgiving to the Lord, offer it of your own free will.
 
Your influence on your sphere is important. Friend, if I can pray specifically in any manner, please let me know. I count it a privilege to pray for you. My prayer for you is that you are able to take from the abundance of your life and give it out to others over the next week. May your Thanksgiving be evidenced in your ThanksLiving.
 
These last two weeks have been full to overflowing. In a conversation with a new Muslim friend, a new believer, and a daughter of my heart in Starbucks, my heart was filled. As we discussed living with moral responsibility, my new friend looked at me, "You are a man of the Book, what do you think about....?" The conversation covered many items from beer to bed. As we prayed openly and out loud with the Father joining the conversation, I thought, "God, you are impacting. You are being You in the street of our city." I am proud of my daughter and her influence in the community. Some 25 others joined us online in this conversation http://ow.ly/fn3hQ.
 
I am thankful for you as one of those making a difference, Friend. I challenge you to live as one of those. You have so much for which you can be thankful and offer to others.
 
In Mexico, the family at CAREVI continues to impact Matamoros. On Saturday night a tarp/tent in an open dirt lot became a temple of praise and prayer and benevolence. Many local families received encouragement, were welcomed into a new relationship with the family of God at CAREVI and universal, and received a few groceries. Now, a team will continue to encourage and meet in Fraccionmiento Praderas colonia to help the people grow in stable family lives. I am proud of these beautiful co-laborers at CAREVI.
 
At a gathering with middle aged bible college students expanding urban based ministries, I spoke on the Four Powers a Leader and Father needs. Afterwards we visited over some of the best greens and cornbread you can imagine. These men and women in their 50's are set to make an impact. I am honored to join with these and am proud of them and their sacrificial living.
 
I am thankful for you as one of those making a difference, Friend. I challenge you to live as one of those. You have so much for which you can be thankful and offer to others.
 
Other conversations with business professionals this week centered around establishing the Heartland Center for families and fathers. There is a great need for an online and brick and mortar center for men to work through life issues and receive encouragement and education and couples to receive counsel. Are you aware from 1960 to present we have gone from 4% of our children being born with a marriage never involved to over 43%? Are you aware that has gone from being teenagers to twenty-somethings? Where has commitment gone? Where has our moral base gone? The number of children living with no father present has grown geometrically. I am proud of business professionals making a difference.
 
Answering specific prayers for legislators across our nation is a joy to my heart. Reading how individuals are encouraged and receive answers is an amazing adventure. Some 3242 are touched weekly. I am proud of legislators giving sacrificially to serve.
 
Prayer at the Jesus House for the love of God to reach many during this peak season of holidays was sweet to God's heart. I am proud of the team that serves there every day.
 
My prayer for you is that you are able to take from the abundance of your life and give it out to others over the next week. May your Thanksgiving be evidenced in your ThanksLiving. Have a great ThanksLiving.

Phil Larson 405-388-8037
www.prayermetro.net (FB,Twitter,Blog,Info,Events....)
 
to support financially:
PrayerMetro, Inc. 501c3 508 Tumbleweed Dr. Yukon, Ok 73099
 
Share every good thing you have with anyone who teaches you what God has said (CEV) Galatians 6:6
I am not trying to get something from you, but I want you to receive the blessings that come from giving. Philippians 4:17
 
 
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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

A prayer for peace and restoration, Friend, in a time of destruction and loss.

As our nation reels from the destructive force of natural disaster, the words of Esther come to mind. "For how can I endure to see the evil that will come to my people? Or how can I endure to see the destruction of my countrymen?" Esther 8:6

Our nation has suffered an enormous loss of property, life, and safety during this battering. How can I endure seeing the destruction that has come to friends, Friend? How can I endure the destruction of my countrymen?

Esther received a solution and a hope in her situation. She received a reversal of the situation for others and a plan to continue in blessing.

So I pray today and ask you to join with me, Friend,for:

A hope and a peace for all those affected in the aftermath of this disaster.

A strength and an endurance for all pummeled in this storm.

A restoration of property and a sense of security to all those uprooted and whose lives will never be the same.

A reestablishment of life and business and community and neighborhood as quickly as possible.

A sure faith in the future for all that this too will pass and a new day will dawn with new solutions for these communities.

Wisdom and decisiveness for leaders and rescue workers and engineers and those looking to reconstruct and replace and secure.

In Him,


Phil Larson 405-388-8037
http://prayermetro.wordpress.com
 
to support financially:
PrayerMetro, Inc. 501c3 508 Tumbleweed Dr. Yukon, Ok 73099
Share every good thing you have with anyone who teaches you what God has said (CEV) Galatians 6:6
I am not trying to get something from you, but I want you to receive the blessings that come from giving. Philippians 4:17

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